Climate change and the effects of global warming have been thoroughly and beautifully detailed on two sites. One is GlobalChange.gov, which features the White House’s National Climate Assessment report, and the other is WorldUnderWater.org, a website that uses Google Street view images to show users what their home cities would look under water.
The GlobalChange.gov site features rich graphics, plenty of high-quality images and even social integration, resembling a touch-optimized site that sells high-tech products online in the Post PC era more so than a site meant to provide quick access to a very serious report about climate change.
In addition to stunning visuals, the website provides lots of information about the current state of the climate, and how these changes will affect the planet in the future. For example, in the Oceans section – which can be directly tied to WorldUnderWater.org site – the report explains the changes oceans go through and what that means for their ecosystems, but also for the entire world.
“Today, the world’s oceans absorb more than 90% of the heat trapped by increasing levels of CO2 and other greenhouse gases in the atmosphere due to human activities, the report reads. “This extra energy warms the ocean, causing it to expand and sea levels to rise. Of the global sea level rise observed over the last 35 years, about 40% is due to this warming of the water. Most of the rest is due to the melting of glaciers and ice sheets. Ocean levels are projected to rise another 1 to 4 feet over this century, with the precise number largely depending on the amount of global temperature rise and polar ice sheet melt.”
Separately, WorldUnderWater.org shows images of certain locations, picked up by using Google’s Street View feature, as they might be affected by rising oceans. The site also presents facts about the rising sea level and provides access to easily recognizable landmarks. Beyond that, users can also see how their own streets would look under water. They can even share any submerged Street View location they choose on Facebook and Twitter, including the Arc de Triomphe from Paris, France (image above).